Background: Termination of pregnancy for foetal malformation has enabled couples to avoid the birth of an unhealthy foetus. However, it could be considered as a traumatic life event with high psychological impact. The existing findings from qualitative studies are presented from different points of view depending on the socio-cultural context of each study. Therefore, women’s experiences and needs towards termination of pregnancy for foetal anomaly in a wide range of regions and socio-cultural contexts is required in order to gain a comprehensive understanding and make recommendations as a basis for evidence-based practice which meets the needs of women.
Objectives: This systematic review aims to identify and synthesise the best-available evidence on the meaningfulness of women's experiences of termination of pregnancy for foetal anomaly.
Methods: The review considers the qualitative studies drawing on women's experiences of termination of pregnancy for foetal anomaly including, but not limited to phenomenology, grounded theory, and ethnography. Comprehensive search strategies were developed to find both published and unpublished studies in English and Thai languages from their inception up until 2016 including EBSCOHost, CINAHL, Science Direct, Scopus, ProQuest, PsycINFO, PubMed, Web of Science, www.thairesearch.in.th and tdc.thailis.or.th/tdc (database for Thai study). Papers selected for retrieval will be assessed by two independent reviewers using a standardised critical-appraisal instrument from the Joanna Briggs Institute Qualitative Assessment and Review Instrument (JBI-QARI). Data are extracted from included papers using the standardised data-extraction tool from the JBI-QARI and will be analysed with meta-aggregation of JBI.
Results: This is the on-going project. However, the result will apply meta-synthesis to produce a single comprehensive set of synthesised findings that can be used as a basis for evidence-based practice including, but not limited to emotional response, adaptation process, and needs of those women with regard to termination of pregnancy for foetal anomaly.